Imagination Foundation presents ‘2015 Cardboard Challenge’ at Bell Street Park

Kids participate in a 'Cardboard Challenge'

Kids participate in a ‘Cardboard Challenge’

When you’re little, a refrigerator box isn’t just packing material; it’s a castle, cave or new car. From noon-9 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10, the Imagination Foundation is sponsoring the 2015 Cardboard Challenge featuring the movie “Boxtrolls” at Bell Street Park. Children are invited to create cardboard creations and take part in other activities from noon-6 p.m. The outdoor movie starts at 6:30 p.m.

Seattle’s Cardboard Challenge is about encouraging the people of all ages to come together and foster creativity in children. Children are encouraged to build things from their imagination, to be doers, to explore interests and passions, to learn how to be resourceful and persevere and to see every day recyclable objects in new ways.  [Read more…]

Your Fall Bucket List

Cheers with us
Raise a glass to conservation and animals! Join Woodland Park Zoo for the fifth annual Brew and the Zoo beer-tasting event on Thursday, Oct. 1. Sample imports, domestics, microbrews and ciders from more than 40 different breweries. The event includes tastings, live animal encounters, music and access to some award-winning exhibits. Tickets range from $30-70. For more information, go here. (This event is for the 21+ crowd only.)

Maple Viewing at the Seattle Japanese Garden

Maple Viewing at the Seattle Japanese Garden

Marvel with us
In October the Seattle Japanese Garden is ablaze with fall color. Visit on Sunday, Oct. 11, during the official Maple Viewing Festival, or take a tour any time this fall to feast your eyes on reds, oranges and golds. The Maple Viewing Festival includes traditional musical performances and other activities and runs from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Send us your best fall-esque photos on Twitter and we’ll throw you a retweet. For more information, including garden hours and location, go here. [Read more…]

Seniors admitted free to Seattle Japanese Garden on Respect for Elders Day

Seattle Japanese Garden

Seattle Japanese Garden will offer free admission to seniors on Sept. 14, 2015.

The Seattle Japanese Garden will celebrate Respect for Elders Day on Monday, Sept.14, 2015. In honor of this Japanese holiday, seniors age 65 and older will receive free admission to the garden from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Complimentary guided tours will be available starting at 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 2 p.m. on that day. All visitors are welcome to stop by the Tateuchi Community Room to enjoy complimentary iced tea, as well as an art exhibit of beautiful line drawings depicting scenes from the Japanese Garden by artist Vincent Samudovsky.

The Seattle Japanese Garden is located at 1075 Lake Washington Blvd. E. For driving directions and detailed information about the garden, please visit

Get healthy with us

It’s a walk in the park

Get-Out-and-Walk-InfographicStarting a new fitness routine can be intimidating, that’s why we’re recommending that you start this one step at a time – literally. The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) recently released a video encouraging people to walk more.

According to the NRPA, one-third of the adults in the United States are overweight, and less than 50 percent of adults get their needed amount of recommended weekly exercise.  Walking just 30 minutes each day has long-term benefits. It can help reduce the risk of osteoporosis, heart disease, depression and some cancers and can lower blood pressure and sugar levels.

So let’s get started. Seattle Parks and Recreation has 120 miles of developed and semi-developed trails scattered through beautiful forests, beaches and meadows. Take a look at the list here and pick a walk for yourself this weekend. If you want something more urban, do some laps at Green Lake Park or Maple Leaf Reservoir Park or walk along the water at Lake Union.

With 400+ parks in our area, there’s no reason not to get moving! Grab your tennis shoes and get healthier.

September 5 community invited to celebrate expansion of Hing Hay Park


Hing Hay Park is the premier gathering space in the Chinatown-International District.  Hing Hay literally means “pleasurable gatherings.” On Saturday, September 5 from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., the community is invited to celebrate Hing Hay Park at 423 Maynard Ave. S. before construction begins for the park expansion in the fall.

The celebration marks the upcoming construction of the Hing Hay Park expansion and the closing weekend of the Bruce Lee Year 1 exhibit at the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience (The Wing), which will be open until 8 p.m. that night. The celebration starts with plenty of activities for families to enjoy.  The event features displays of the new Hing Hay Park expansion, historic photographs of the park, children’s activities including paper lantern making, coloring, face painting and dragon hand tattoos, table tennis and chess. All will be treated to a Bruce Lee movie entitled  “Enter the Dragon “ at dusk (approximately 8:30 p.m.). [Read more…]

May we have this dance? Dancing ‘til Dusk continues through August

Dancing 'til Dusk in Westlake Park

Dancing ’til Dusk in Westlake Park, photo by TIA International Photography

Are you ready for a brand new beat? Summer’s here, and the time is right, for dancing in the street PARKS!

Grab your friends, kids, neighbors or significant other and get ready for the second half or our annual Dancing ‘til Dusk events.

The Dancing ‘til Dusk program began in 2007. The original program produced five Thursday nights of dancing, one night for each of five styles—Waltz, Zydeco, Salsa, Line Dancing and Swing. Seattle Parks and Recreation bought an outdoor dance floor, set up a bandstand and distributed invitations widely. Dancers of all ages and abilities came from all over the city and beyond, from a diverse cultural and economic base. Dancing ’til Dusk was born, and has been growing ever since. Now moving into its ninth year, the program includes four downtown parks with 15 nights of dancing, drawing a crowd of 500-800 people per night. [Read more…]

Explore the Japanese Garden after hours by the light of the moon

Moon Viewing, Japanese Garden

Moon Viewing, Japanese Garden,

Moon Viewing, Japanese Garden

Moon Viewing, Japanese Garden,

Enjoy the Seattle Japanese Garden after hours for the annual Moon Viewing Festival from 7-10 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 29. For one enchanting evening each year, the Japanese Garden is magically lit up with lanterns, luminaries and floating boats on the pond welcoming the arrival of the full moon in Japanese tradition.

During o-tsukimi –the Japanese word for moon viewing–the beauty of the garden is enhanced by the sweet sounds of live instrumental music afloat in the night air, inspiring both romance and poetry.

Performers include Marcia Takamura and Chigusa Kitai on koto, James Jennings on shakuhachi, Gretchen Yanover on cello, and White Swans Records artist Gary Stroutsos on bamboo flute.

The festival features a popular haiku writing contest sponsored by Haiku Northwest. Winning poems, which are awarded prizes, will be read aloud to the audience at the end of the evening. [Read more…]

Laurelhurst Community Center and friends to host Laurelhurst Salmon Bake

salmon, rolls and watermelon on picnic table

Laurelhurst Salmon Bake 2014

Join your family and friends for the traditional Salmon Bake at Laurelhurst from 5:30-8 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 10. Special community businesses, Laurelhurst Community Center, Lifelong Recreation and Specialized Programs have partnered to make this another fun event for neighbors to enjoy.

This salmon bake features delicious food and great entertainment. The menu includes grilled wild salmon, corn on the cobb, watermelon, tangy coleslaw, fresh rolls and chocolate brownies. Adult salmon dinner is $15; child salmon dinner (12 and younger) is $10. Hot dog or garden burger dinner is $8. [Read more…]

Bitter Lake Community Center celebrates Night Out with Mayor Murray

Mayor Murray and Bitter Lake Community Center's drill team, The Divas, at Night Out, Aug. 4.

Mayor Murray and Bitter Lake Community Center’s drill team, The Divas, at National Night Out, Aug. 4.

Mayor Murray and Bitter Lake Community Center's kendo class at Night Out, Aug. 4.

Mayor Murray and Bitter Lake Community Center’s Kendo class at National Night Out, Aug. 4.

Mayor Ed Murray joined more than 250 community members at Bitter Lake Community Center’s National Neighborhood Night Out event on Aug. 4.  Neighbors were treated to free food and activities such as face painting and carnival games.  Bitter Lake’s drill team, The Divas, and its very popular Kendo class performed for the crowd.  Attendees received information about upcoming programs and events at the community center and learned about nearby services provided by the Department of Neighborhoods.